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Thread: New Silvia owner!

  1. #1
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    New Silvia owner!

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Just paid for my new Silvia from Coffe-A-Roma! Hurry up Auspost. ;D

  2. #2
    Senior Member David8's Avatar
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    Quote Originally Posted by 6249415B40495A280 link=1333061631/0#0 date=1333061631
    Just paid for my new Silvia from Coffe-A-Roma! Hurry up Auspost.* ;D

    Good choice! Good luck in your quest for those god shots!

  3. #3
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    hey, what happened to the $150 budget? ;)

    Good stuff - youll enjoy the Silvia - just dont forget to prime, and learn how to surf :D

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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    Quote Originally Posted by 333B33343E385A0 link=1333061631/2#2 date=1333064723
    hey, what happened to the $150 budget? ;)

    Good stuff - youll enjoy the Silvia - just dont forget to prime, and learn how to surf* :D
    The other half likes to buy new with some warranty so budget was never achievable! And Ive already been looking into the temperature surfing thing. A PID might be on the cards down the track. Once I max out my abilities on it, might take awhile though.

  5. #5
    blend52
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    I wish you good coffee with your Silvia ! :D
    but be prepared for a frustrating learning curve too.
    Have you a grinder to suit ?
    I feel you may have shot yourself in the foot somewhat !..
    ..Here is why..
    The Silvia is certainly capable of fine coffee providing you take the time to learn her sensitive areas !
    BUT, in addition to the usual Bean ,Roast, grind, tamp , etc variables... you will need to get to grips with Silvias temperature ( mood ?) swings ! :P
    The standard thermostat gives a range somewhere between 85 C and 125 C, ! :o and there is no thermometer to tell you what she is doing...it becomes a guessing game to hit that sweet spot temperature so necessary for the "God shot" ( Temperature / Time "surfing" )
    This is where your sore foot comes into it !..
    fitting a digital thermometer ( see "Gronking") is a huge help, and a PID will really sort her out, ..BUT you have a nice shiny new girl, who will scream "warranty murder" if you attempt to install either under her skirt !
    Its a shame , because you could install that PID for $50 and have a 100% better machine, with consistent temperature brews, but i fear you wont be able to do that for a couple of years ! :(

  6. #6
    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    Quote Originally Posted by 404E474C461710220 link=1333061631/4#4 date=1333081122
    I wish you good coffee with your Silvia ! :D
    but be prepared for a frustrating learning curve too.
    Have you a grinder to suit ?
    I feel you may have shot yourself in the foot somewhat !..
    ..Here is why..
    The Silvia is certainly capable of fine* coffee providing you take the time to learn her sensitive areas !
    BUT, in addition to the usual Bean ,Roast, grind, tamp , etc variables... you will need to get to grips with Silvias temperature ( mood ?) swings !* :P
    The standard thermostat gives a range somewhere between 85 C and 125 C, ! :o and there is no thermometer to tell you what she is doing...it becomes a guessing game to hit that sweet spot temperature so necessary for the "God shot"* ( Temperature / Time "surfing" )
    This is where your sore foot comes into it !..
    fitting a digital thermometer ( see "Gronking")* is a huge help, and a PID will really sort her out, ..BUT* you have a nice shiny new girl, who will scream "warranty murder"* if you attempt to install either under her skirt !
    Its a shame , because you could install that PID for $50 and have a 100% better machine, with consistent temperature brews, but i fear you wont be able to do that for a couple of years !* :(
    I disagree with almost everything you say here B52, theres nothing sensitive about the Silvia that anyone of average intelligence should not be able to master fairly quickly although like you I did wonder if there is a suitable grinder somewhere in the picture.
    With a little common sense and an orderly approach to the learning process Jaishar should have little trouble pulling decent shots within a short period of time.
    Ive had a quite a bit of experience with Silvias, older models and new, owned one myself for 9 years, 2 other close family members own newer Silvias and both are producing very acceptable coffee.
    These machines are stock standard except for the PF baskets on mine, I changed to a 18g La Marzocco and dumped the single basket in a drawer, have never used it since.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    Quote Originally Posted by 604B4359424B582A0 link=1333061631/0#0 date=1333061631
    Just paid for my new Silvia from Coffe-A-Roma! Hurry up Auspost.* ;D
    Good luck with the new machine mate, youve made a good choice.
    Do you have a grinder?
    If you have any teething problems PM me and Ill help you sort them out. ;)

  8. #8
    dman777
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    Flavor wise, I think the Silvia makes great flavor shots. I find that temp does not influence the flavor that much, so I did not bother with a PID. This is because so many other variables dominate flavor more such as grind, age of beans, and tamping.

    Its a painful learning experience but you will get there.

  9. #9
    CoffeeChaser
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    Congrats on the new purchase.

    I have the same machine and dont have a PID installed. I thought about it but dont think I will bother now. You can get consistently great espresso out of it when you get into a good routine with it. Read up on temp surfing but at the end of the day find a system that works for you and stick to it.

    I have used commercial saturated group heads and have played around a lot with different temps through PID and temp does affect flavour dramatically. Getting a good routine in place will help you to be pulling shots in the right temperature range. Plenty of people who adjust temp through a PID that have no idea what they are doing and as a result pull ordinary shots.

    Each machine has pros and cons and I like you made the choice of the Silvia and have enjoyed having it and can see myself keeping it for a long time. Enjoy the fun learning curve.

  10. #10
    blend52
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    Quote Originally Posted by 19252C3421400 link=1333061631/5#5 date=1333082737
    ... theres nothing sensitive about the Silvia that anyone of average intelligence should not be able to master fairly quickly ..
    Oh , i agree most will master the tricks fairly quickly, but you must agree that the 30+ C temp range is not very optimized for good brewing !
    Surely we agree that temperature control is a fundamental for consistent shots, and "surfing" temp or time is just a "band aid" to help overcome a defect !
    The Silvia is an excellent machine but it is not perfect.
    It would be easier if there was a temperature gauge, and even a PID system is cheap and easy enough to install, .. but as i said , doing it on a new machine is going to be an issue for the warranty.

  11. #11
    claraflo
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    And yet you can still make coffee you enjoy immensely even without a PID or other gadgets. And yeah, if you mod the machine, there goes your warranty.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    Quote Originally Posted by 424D405340474D4E210 link=1333061631/10#10 date=1333098504
    And yet you can still make coffee you enjoy immensely even without a PID or other gadgets. And yeah, if you mod the machine, there goes your warranty.
    Exactly, they work pretty darned well right out of the box. :)

  13. #13
    Member chonski's Avatar
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    Congrats on the Silvia purchase...is good fun learning how to use it :)

    On the PID...I went for a few years without it
    Theres a bucketload of info about temp surfing so take your pick of the options or create your own process, but for me (assuming the machine is pre heated):
    - flick the brew switch until the light comes on
    - grind and dose. By this time the light usually has gone off again (was using a rocky at this time)
    - run water til the steam stops coming from the brew group
    - lock in and pull the shot

    I eventually added a PID and I am a convert - I think it makes life a LOT easier with the Silvia
    However it still does pretty well without it

    From a warranty point of view...most of the PID kit installations I looked at were fully reversible *cough** :)

  14. #14
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    I think the key to consistency with a stock Silvia is as simple as understanding the pattern of the heating/cooling cycle. You have one known quantity, which is the temperature rating of the brew thermoswitch - 100 degrees C. There will be a bit of overshoot because of the time lag as the heat is transferred from the water through the brass boiler to the thermoswitch on top. So by the time the thermoswitch has opened, the brew water will be a bit hotter than 100 degrees C - maybe 110 or so. The key thing is it will always switch off at the same temp, consistency of set point is not their weak point, rather the deadband is - it might not switch on again until the temps drop into the low 80s.

    So, all you need to establish is how long the machine takes to cool naturally from the top of the temp curve until the temp you wish to start the shot at. Once water is exiting below boiling point (no steam) you are into the mid 90s, which is a good starting point. This might only take 30 seconds after the indicator light goes off (they cool quite quickly on their own), and you could speed this up by running the group for a few seconds to mix a small quantity of cold water back into the boiler.

    Id also add that converting to PID control will not give you temp stability during a shot, although it will give you the same starting temp - this is simply to do with the boiler volume of the machine. As soon as you switch on the pump, youre introducing cold water into that small volume, and the temps plummet. A PID will not react quickly enough to keep the brew temp stable over the course of the shot given the amount of work that is needed to quickly heat the incoming cold water.

    For PIDs to work effectively, the incoming cold water needs to be offset by the thermal mass of a larger boiler. Thus, even dual boiler commercial machines still run the incoming cold brew water through a heat exchanger first, to minimise the amount of work the PID has to do to keep things stable.

    My workaround - mash the steam switch a couple of seconds before starting the shot and then flick it off again perhaps half way through the pour. Its possible to keep things within a few degrees C of the starting temp with some quick switch work. And, its more fun!

  15. #15
    blend52
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    Quote Originally Posted by 5F636A7267060 link=1333061631/11#11 date=1333102195
    ... they work pretty darned well right out of the box. :)
    An unfamiliar operator will need practice to learn how to avoid pulling bad shots from any single boiler machine,..Silvia included.
    Why do you not accept that the temp control on these machines is disappointing, especially as there are simple, proven, known remedys, that the manufacturer or retailer could fit very cheaply to correct the problem. ??

  16. #16
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    Wow. Heaps of good info, thanks everyone. Ive done my homework on this machine and know what to expect. I have a breville smart grinder and i hope it will be ok with Miss Silvia. Anyone have some input if itll be ok? Im currently getting my beans from Andy so I know they are fresh. I got a second hand bread maker the other day I set up a corretto roaster. Hopefully Ill have it going soon.

    Im aware of the temp surfing, Ill be trying it exactly as you suggested Chonski. If I have any issues at all my first stop for help will be here. A massive wealth of knowledge Im hoping to rely on.

    Thanks for all the replies, the more I know the better.

    Jai

  17. #17
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    Re: New Silvia owner!

    Quote Originally Posted by 5279716B70796A180 link=1333061631/15#15 date=1333104927
    I got a second hand bread maker the other day I set up a corretto roaster.
    Nice. Ill be stopping in for a home roast on my way past this Friday... no need to give me directions, Ill smell my way there ;D



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